- Cullman, Alabama

November 17, 2012

Robbery ruled out in earlier incident

By David Palmer
The Cullman Times

— A reported robbery Wednesday night turned out to be false, but an investigation of those involved in the incidents is continuing.

Cullman Police Department’s chief investigator in the case, Lt. Gene Bates, said the incident appears to have involved money that was taken in a suspected drug deal. But he added that the  suspected drug deal occurred that led to Wednesday’s problems happened days earlier.

“Robbery is a serious matter and we’re looking at a lot of angles, but we have determined there was not a robbery,” Bates said. “We’re now looking at what possible charges could come from this and why it evolved into being reported as a robbery. We don’t have many robberies in our community and we wanted to be sure of what happened and we’re going to continue the investigation for a while longer.”

Cullman police received a call of a robbery around 7 p.m. Wednesday, with the caller reporting it had occurred on the top floor of the parking deck downtown, said Lt. Gene Bates of the Cullman Police Department.

The caller gave a description of a black man with a gun, who reportedly retreated to a car with three women in it after another person approached the scene. After receiving the call officers began looking for a car with the suspects and spotted the vehicle on U.S. Highway 31 South in Cullman.

“The officers involved in this did a great job of finding the reported suspects and getting everyone separated for questioning,” Bates said. “Officers Trevor Clemons and Jerry Perkins as well as other officers and deputies from the Cullman County Sheriff’s Office all helped and did a great job.”

After pulling over the suspect who were accused of the robbery, investigators did not find a gun.

“We’ve had a lot of people to talk to concerning this incident, but most importantly as this time we wanted to let our residents know that it was not a robbery,” Bates said. “The suspects are all residents of the area from Fairview, Hanceville and Cullman.”

Bates said a determination about charges will be made in the next week.

David Palmer may be contacted at or 256-734-2131, ext. 213.